The first time I received an email and letter from the National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS) inviting me to join their organization, I had to stop and think first. I wondered if it was worth joining and paying the $95 lifetime fee. After days of pondering, I accepted the offer to join one of the most prestigious honors organizations nationwide.
As a Member
It was 2018, and I was in my second semester at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) as a first-year student. I got an email from one of the board members of the UNLV Chapter inviting me to a general meeting at the main library on campus, so I attended.
After my induction into the chapter that same year, I set sail to get involved in this organization. Months went by, and I attended most of the meetings. My goal at the time was to be one of the most active members at the UNLV Chapter, and I eventually did.
The chapter partnered up with other organizations on campus. They were holding a toy drive and needed lots of toys. I had a bike in the garage that I never used, and I thought I would give that away to someone who could benefit from it more than me. When the board members found out what I did, they were awestruck from my act of charity. Because I embodied the pillars of scholarship, leadership, and service, the national office gave me the Outstanding Scholar Award in April of 2019.
The board treated me kindly, and I’ll never forget what they did. They came up with lots of fun activities that I found to be inspiring, but little did I know (at that time) that I would be a board member in the future.
Being a Board Member
After two years of being a member, I decided to take a step forward. In March of 2020, the chapter was preparing to have elections, and they needed to recruit new members to take their place. During a volunteering event at a local children’s education nonprofit organization, the idea of being the Vice President of Community Service at the chapter came to me.
I enjoy doing community service, so I volunteered across the valley when I had the chance. I put time aside to help the community just because. Because of this, I ended up pursuing the role but with doubts in my mind. No one was running against me; it looked like the odds are on my side, but I kept thinking to myself, “What am I getting myself into?” Those doubts stayed with me for a while.
Voting came, and I won the position. Shortly after the election, I started to come up with ways NSCS can give back to the community despite the pandemic restrictions. These restrictions were a challenge to me since my initial plans were to hold in-person community service events. After listening and watching videos of community service ideas from the national office, I decided to get creative. I came up with the idea of writing thank you cards to essential/frontline workers, and the board agreed. I took a lot of time to write the thank you cards and had my fellow colleagues deliver it to them in a safe and secure manner. Recipients of those cards were pleased and kept them.
Writing and giving out thank you cards came from people who took the time to extend their gratitude to those doing a lot of work while also putting their lives at risk to help each other. I enjoyed my position as VP of Community Service a whole lot and realized I did the right thing by running for this position. I thought that I was going to serve on the board for just one school year, but I ended up running again, because I love what I am doing for my chapter.
As a board member, I found that I can provide an opinion to my chapter so that we can make the right decisions in making every semester a great one. I am incredibly fortunate to join a group of students who are supportive of one another and share the same goals as I do- to help make our chapter a better place for our new and current members. If any board member had any questions, another board member would step in and answer. We are there to help each other, because we believe in working as a team. I am also grateful to my colleagues for letting me contribute my ideas on how to give back to our community in a useful and safe manner through NSCS.
Why It’s Worth Joining
If you choose to join this organization, and depending on if you have time on your hands or not, I would still give NSCS a try. You will benefit no matter how much time you have to commit. If you have the opportunity to participate in the activities that your chapter announced, this can give you the moment to get to know your chapter and its board members. I’ll tell you, my chapter provided members with lots of exciting events that I considered NSCS to be my happy place away from school and stress- while I completed my school assignments. NSCS gave me some motivation while I was struggling with time management and other ordeals at the time. In other words, this society benefitted me in a positive way rather than in a negative way.
NSCS can give you an opportunity to hone your leadership skills. Plus, you will have the opportunity to give back to your own community by helping those around you, and I am doing exactly just that now.
This organization is open to all majors and/or minors as long as you have and will maintain a 3.0 grade point average (according to NSCS’ requirements on becoming a member). This is a good chance for you to make a difference out there while you are completing your studies in college. Plus, the skills that you acquire from this organization could benefit you post-graduation, so I recommend taking advantage of this opportunity today.
I hope that my testimony gave you an idea of why it’s worth joining the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. Looking back on when I was first asked to join NSCS in my university, I wasn’t sure at first, and admittedly, I initially didn’t agree on paying the $95 lifetime fee. My family sensed that this is a good society and encouraged me to join. Since then, I have not regretted the decision since. Check to see if your university has NSCS in their registered student organizations list because joining this honor society is worth it.
VP of Community Service
NSCS at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas